On Monday Pope Francis launched a new initiative for the poor and homeless of Rome – he has opened a free launderette, complete with washing, drying and ironing services for those without a home or a fixed living condition. This new project organised by the Office of Papal Charities follows their previous initiatives aimed at helping the underprivileged with housing, meals, showers, haircuts and medical facilities.

The service, located at an old hospital in Rome’s Trastevere neighbourhood, includes six brand-new washers and dryers, donated by Whirlpool, while Procter and Gamble donated washing detergents to the project. Iron machines and other products needed for the service have also been generously donated by many. The free service will allow the poor (especially those without homes), to wash, dry and iron their clothes.

A statement from the Office of Papal Charities said the initiative came from Pope Francis’s invitation to show “concrete” acts of mercy, in response to the experience of the Jubilee of Mercy, which ended last year.


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